There are a lot of questions about what is EMF radiation and how it affects our bodies. From Wi-Fi dangers, to microwave radiation, there is ElectroMagnetic Field (EMF) radiation all around us.
The heated debate of whether or not EMFs cause cancer is championed by the countless of people that claim that their families have been harmed on the one side, and governing institutions on the other hand, which claim there is no risk.
What does the research really say?
Read on to find out…
Table of Contents
- Save BIG on the Harmoni Pendant for EMF Protection!
- What is EMF Radiation?
- How do we Measure the Impact of EMF Radiation?
- What Causes EMFs?
- Are EMFs Dangerous?
- What is EMF Exposure & Are There Risks?
- Can EMFs Be Avoided?
- How Can I Limit EMF Exposure?
- Aren’t Microwave Radiation Dangers a Myth?
- 7 Ways to Mitigate EMF Damage
- What Will You Do About EMFs?
What is EMF Radiation?
Electromagnetic fields (EMF) occur when electric current flows in one direction, and magnetic waves flow at a right angle to the current—the EMF is perpendicular to both. Think of the corner of a cube; each edge represents one of these energy directions. The wider energy field created where these forces collide is where EMFs occur.
EMF fields are invisible waves that generate radiation and exist all around us. To understand the threat of EMFs, we need to understand how the waves work and frequency, or how often the waves appear in a given space. These waves form a spectrum, from low to high frequency and are classed into two groups: ionizing and non-ionizing.
- Ionizing waves have a higher frequency and thus, a shorter distance between peaks of the waves, also known as wavelengths. We all recognize these as being harmful to our bodies: ultraviolet rays from the sun, X-rays, and radioactive elements. It’s indisputable today that overexposure to ionizing EMF waves can cause cancer, radiation sickness, and other deadly diseases.
- Non-ionizing, or low frequency, EMF has a longer wavelength and lower frequency. These include power lines, cell phones, laptops, TVs, microwave ovens, and other tech devices you have around your home. Radiofrequency (RF) waves are non-ionizing waves that are closer to the center of the spectrum while extremely low frequency (ELF) waves are at the far-left side.
EMFs are known to have a powerful influence in many ways. All wireless signals are EMFs of some kind. This is the technology that brings us remote controls, radio, walkie talkies, cell phone reception, and even Wi-Fi access. EMFs are not an exclusive result of cutting-edge technology—household electric wiring, high voltage wires, X-rays, and even visible light all have EMFs as well.
According to Maxwell’s Law (source), EMFs can even occur near an electric current, not just in direct contact with the current. To further complicate matters, additional EMFs can be created or an existing EMF can be magnified when in contact with other forms of energy, such as heat or light. (source)
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How Do We Measure the Impact of EMF Radiation?
The full impact of EMFs on human health is largely a question mark; however, many studies conclusively verify harm to humans including an increased risk of several forms of cancer. Numerous other studies have attempted to demonstrate any kind of positive impact from low-level man-made EMF exposure via various methods with uncertain results.
EMFs are considered to be low-level if their frequency does not exceed that of visible light and if their radiation is non-ionizing; some examples of low-level radiation include visible light, cell phones, Bluetooth devices, microwave ovens, computers, laptops, tablets, and power lines. Microwaves are among the highest frequency EMFs that can still be considered low-level.
EMF Dangers – Because the reported symptoms of EMF overexposure vary so much, it can be a difficult field of study. Further, no reliable threshold has been established regarding how much exposure at what strength is too much.
The safety limit now in place was established in 1953—long before the explosion of modern EMF-emitters—by Herman Schwan. (3) This limit was based on the amount of heat the EMF emits, and we now know that heat is the least of our worries; Schwan later went on record to say he had learned more and changed his mind and that this limit was inadequate due to the non-heat effects of EMFs.
Further, no test of the EMFs in the atmosphere has been conducted by the US since 1979! A distinction has been made between ionizing and non-ionizing EMFs as well, but this field is still wide open to study.
According to the World Health Organization (source), the difference between non-ionizing electromagnetic fields and ionizing radiation depends on the ability of electromagnetic waves to break molecular bonds. Non-ionizing radiation supposedly cannot break molecular bonds, whereas ionizing radiation can:
- “Wavelength and frequency determine another important characteristic of electromagnetic fields: Electromagnetic waves are carried by particles called quanta. Quanta of higher frequency (shorter wavelength) waves carry more energy than lower frequency (longer wavelength) fields.
- Some electromagnetic waves carry so much energy per quantum that they have the ability to break bonds between molecules. In the electromagnetic spectrum, gamma rays given off by radioactive materials, cosmic rays and X-rays carry this property and are called ‘ionizing radiation’.
- Fields whose quanta are insufficient to break molecular bonds are called ‘non-ionizing radiation’.
- Man-made sources of electromagnetic fields that form a major part of industrialized life – electricity, microwaves and radiofrequency fields – are found at the relatively long wavelength and low frequency end of the electromagnetic spectrum and their quanta are unable to break chemical bonds.”
Understanding EMFs is vitally important because of the unprecedented level of exposure in our technologically advancing world. Since we and our vulnerable, developing children are so constantly barraged with EMFs, and because there is a valid risk of long-term damage, we must continue to investigate the influence and health repercussions of EMFs to ensure basic safety.
What Causes EMFs?
Man-made electromagnetic fields are caused by electronic devices, particularly those that emit certain types of communication waves with an electric current perpendicular to a magnetic field. Microwave ovens emit EMFs as do radio towers, Wi-Fi towers and routers, cell phones, and more common devices like laptops, tablets, and cell phones.
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Naturally occurring EMFs exist in the created universe with no human interference. The sun, the earth, the moon and other bodies have their own EMF frequency. The frequency of the Earth is known as Schumann’s number or Schumann’s resonance and is believed to have a healing and grounding effect on people exposed to manmade EMFs. (See Handbook of Atmospheric Electrodynamics)
Even the human body runs on electrical and magnetic energy as evidenced by the effectiveness of defibrillators that can shock the heart back into its normal rhythm.
Are EMFs Dangerous?
Governing agencies like the NIH claim that, “No consistent evidence for an association between any source of non-ionizing EMF and cancer has been found.” However, according to a ground-breaking Scientific American report (source).
- 240+ scientists, who have published peer-reviewed research on the dangers of non-ionizing electromagnetic fields (EMF), signed the International EMF Scientist Appeal, which calls for stronger exposure limits.
- The appeal makes the following assertions: “Numerous recent scientific publications have shown that EMF affects living organisms at levels well below most international and national guidelines. Effects include increased cancer risk, cellular stress, increase in harmful free radicals, genetic damages, structural and functional changes of the reproductive system, learning and memory deficits, neurological disorders, and negative impacts on general well-being in humans. Damage goes well beyond the human race, as there is growing evidence of harmful effects to both plant and animal life.”
- These scientists constitute the majority of experts on the effects of non-ionizing radiation and have published 2,000+ papers on EMF in professional journals.
- In 2018, a $30 million study conducted by the U.S. National Toxicology Program discovered “clear evidence” that two years of exposure to cell phone radio frequency radiation increased cancer in male rats and damaged DNA in rats and mice of both sexes. (3)
- More than 500 studies, have found harmful biologic or health effects from exposure to radio frequency radiation (RFR) at intensities too low to cause significant heating. (source)
- Even the World Health Organization admits the risk! Lyon, France, May 31, 2011 ‐‐ The WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified radiofrequency electromagnetic fields as “possibly carcinogenic to humans” based on an increased risk for glioma – a malignant type of brain cancer associated with wireless phone use. (source)
One way EMFs cause damage throughout the human body is through reactive oxygen species (or ROS), a compound that is a by-product made by our cells. ELF can disrupt this process or cause too much ROS to be created and that can lead to oxidative damage, that is, damage caused by adding oxygen, in our cells. This effect is not all bad. Current medical research is trying to understand if this process can be used as a treatment for cancer.
The ROS our cells create is a type of free radical, which is another term for a “loose” or unpaired election. These loose oxygen radicals have the potential to harm the outer barrier of our cells. This effect can be caused by both types of low-frequency EMF and leads to a condition in the cells called oxidative stress. This is a common precursor to disease and the adverse effects of aging. That allows EMF radiation to enter the cells, causing damage to both the cells and the DNA. This type of compromised cellular process can then eventually lead to cancer.
Additionally, some studies suggest that low-frequency EMF could be even more harmful to our youngest and most vulnerable populations. One review states that fetuses, babies, and children are more susceptible to damaging EMF exposure, which can be attributed to both having thinner skulls as well as having denser stem cells. This again increases the risk of cancer and can even damage brain development.
And Dr. Martha Herbert, Ph.D., a pediatric neurologist and a brain development researcher specializing in autism, claims that low-frequency EMF contributes to the toxic burden that are areas of “physiological vulnerabilities” for kids and people on the autism spectrum. In other words, Wi-Fi is even more harmful to an autistic person’s brain. (source)
EMFs can also disrupt and even relocate electrons and ions in the body’s atoms. This can impact body tissues that are especially vulnerable and cause damage that also leads to cancer.Many lab studies suggest that EMFs can potentially harm chromosomes, blood pathways, cardiovascular systems, bone marrow, developing embryos, the endocrine system, the pineal gland, protein synthesis, and more.
The symptoms of low-level microwave EMF overexposure involve a cluster of symptoms including: (source)
- Fatigue & Tiredness
- Dysesthesia – Impairment of the Senses
- Dizziness & Inability-to-Balance
- Difficulty Concentrating & Lack-of-Focus
- Depression & Depressive Symptoms
- Concentration & Attention Dysfunction
- Loss of Appetite & Body Weight
- Memory Changes
- Restlessness & Anxiety
- Skin Burning & Tingling
- EEG Changes (Heart)
Low-frequency electromagnetic fields are believed to be less dangerous than high frequency EMFs; however, people chronically exposed to lower frequencies may still experience symptoms or even long-term damage.
High frequency EMFs are thought to be more damaging, but the truth is, the damage may simply be more immediately apparent. If you expose your skin to bright sunlight for too long, you will notice a sunburn fairly soon from the sun’s energy. Marie Curie unfortunately discovered the dangers of radiation poisoning soon after experimenting on herself with newly discovered X-ray waves.
These are examples of EMF harm, but they are not the only ones. The cumulative effects of nearly constant low-level EMF exposure are largely unknown.
The Great Experiment – As a society, we are allowing and even embracing this technology in our lives and in our children’s spaces without stopping to question the health impact. It is almost as if we’ve collectively signed on for a massive experiment with no safety parameters nor informed consent because the technology has not existed long enough to have been adequately studied.
It is important to remember that the effects of EMFs are cumulative, meaning that they build up over time, and never decrease without being specifically treated and significantly decreasing new exposure. Many scientists are concerned with EMF exposure risks and with good reason.
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What is EMF Exposure & Are There Risks?
Some of known risks of EMF overexposure are identified in the following studies:
- Heart Damage. EMFs alter your ECG readings—that is, they affect the functioning of your heart. (source)
- Brain Cancer from Microwaves. There is a 28% higher incidence of brain tumors with exposure to extremely low or low frequency EMFs, specifically microwave EMFs. (source)
- Depression & Mental Illness from Microwaves. EMFs including microwaves can cause psychiatric harm including depression (source)
- Malignant Brain Tumors. The World Health Organization has identified EMF radiation as a probable human carcinogen capable of causing glioma (malignant brain tumors), and this National Institute of Health study goes one step further, stating EMFs should be regarded as such. (source)
- Childhood Leukemia/ Blood Cancer. Your child’s proximity to electric wiring in the house, high voltage lines outside, or even radio towers can double his or her risk of leukemia and increase the risk of childhood cancer in general. (source)
- Breast Cancer. Household and occupational levels of EMFs are associated with increased occurrence of breast cancer in women. (source)
- Brain Cancer from Cell Phones. It is now definitive. “Heavy” use of cell phones (defined as 30 minutes daily for at least 10 years) results in higher incidence of brain cancer, especially on the preferred side (left or right), especially for people who first used a cell phone before age 20, and the higher the use, the greater the risk. (source)
Can EMFs Be Avoided?
No, you cannot avoid all EMFs. Not only do naturally occurring bodies produce EMFs, but it’s no longer feasible to avoid even the man-made EMFs. Even locales as remote as the polar ice caps use EMF-emitting technology to communicate. Most of us are essentially surrounded.
Although, you cannot entirely eliminate EMF exposure, there is a lot that can be done to avoid the most harmful sources and to limit the total cumulative exposure from even low-level sources.
How Can I Limit EMF Exposure?
Strategies to limit EMF exposure while using the internet, computers, and other devices:
- When Using a Laptop or Computer – Place it on a table or EMF shield, further away from you, instead of on your lap or close to your body.
- Playing Movies on a Tablet for Kids – Instead of having it in their laps or directly behind your head on the seat, try mounting the tablet between the seatbacks.
- Connecting to the Internet – Use a LAN hard-wired connection when possible, and unplug the router when not in use.
- Talking on Your Cell Phone – Use wired headphones or speaker phone over a Bluetooth earpiece or holding the phone against your head.
- Allowing Kids on Tablets and Computers – Install or display games on a TV screen when possible, and limit time spent on electronic devices.
- Sending Files Between In-Home Devices – Use a hard-wired connection or LAN connection when possible vs Bluetooth connection.
- Using a Microwave – Leave the room when the microwave is in use, or substitute what you use the microwave for in your home.
Aren’t Microwave Radiation Dangers a Myth?
Maybe you remember the microwave oven scares from when microwave technology was fairly young, and people mistrusted something so different and new. Our minds have been relatively easy since the dangers of microwaving in plastic containers were proven and addressed.
Many people believe the only microwave danger was shown to be a plastic-related problem—that’s why we now have BPA-free plastics, right? What we know about the potential risks of microwaving food, apart from toxic chemicals leaching from plastic into food, centers around electromagnetic fields. Electromagnetic fields, or EMFs are emitted by many devices including microwaves, and can be harmful.
Because the microwaves (not the microwave ovens, but the actual waves) themselves are a form of radiant energy (radiation), the inherent risks must be carefully investigated and considered. We know heating food in plastic is harmful, but what is the risk of EMFs from microwaves? What we don’t know about EMFs can harm us.
Consider the fact that when microwave ovens were first available to consumers, they frequently came with a bonus set of BPA-laden, “microwave-safe” dishes! To date, there is no smoking gun showing that microwaving food has directly caused a disease.
We do not fully understand all the effects of microwave radiation on human health. We do not know the full extent of the harm that EMFs can cause, either. However, after examining the evidence, you, too may wish to limit your family’s exposure to EMFs.
Why is it even important to consider a limit on EMF exposure or microwave use?
One might say, the dearth of solid knowledge in combination with many health implications is precisely the reason for further investigation. We can only make good decisions if we have good information. A technology that touches so many lives at such a basic-needs level—our food preparation—warrants close scrutiny if there is any chance it may cause harm.
We all love the convenience of microwave cooking. If you’re in love with your time saving, but EMF-emitting microwave, this section is just for you. As a concerned parent, or health-conscious consumer, you may be considering getting rid of the microwave altogether after looking at the research.
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Here are specific strategies to ditch your microwave for non-EMF generating food preparation:
- Pop Your Popcorn with Air – Instead of using the microwave for popcorn, which includes a host of other chemicals beyond the microwave use, try using an air-pop machine or whirly bird stove top popper.
- Heating Water or Coffee – Instead of reheating coffee in the microwave, try single-serve coffee makers or coaster-size hot plates to keep your cup of Joe warm. Use an electric kettle for instant hot water.
- Cooking Personal Size Meals – Use a toaster oven instead of a microwave for quick meals made in smaller portions without the EMF exposure of a microwave.
- Reheating Leftovers – Mama Z has a tried and true method of reheating leftovers without the need for a microwave; Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 8-15 minutes. BONUS – the texture is better too!
- Thawing Meat – There are several ways to thaw meat that doesn’t require a microwave. If you forget to defrost it in the fridge overnight, try placing the meat in a sealed, waterproof baggie in a sink of warm water.
Replacing your microwave isn’t the only step you can take to create a more healthy environment in your home.
7 Ways to Mitigate EMF Damage
By this point, you may feel like a walking science fair experiment. No worries—there are ways to correct and heal after EMF exposure, and this will happen more quickly if you also limit exposure as much as possible. If you feel you already have concerning symptoms of EMF overexposure or you know you have been exposed to high levels of EMFs, it’s best to consult with a trusted, knowledgeable health care provider.
If you are simply concerned, but do not yet display unusual symptoms, you can try these measures at home.
1. Use Essential Oils
I recently stumbled upon a fascinating research article suggesting that fennel essential oil can help reduce damage done to the reproductive system damage due to EMFs. “The antioxidant compounds in fennel & vitamin E, with other antioxidants,” the Iranian researchers stated, “Can reduce the harmful effects of EMFs on the reproductive system.” (source)
Harmful effects of EMFs on the reproductive system? Yep!
Many people are unaware that, “EMFs induced cell death in testicular germ cell in mice”. And, “According to many researchers, neuroendocrine changes caused by EMFs are a key factor in changing hormone function and cause infertility symptoms in females.”
Try this at home: consider applying a 2% dilution of fennel as a gentle, therapeutic body oil when you’re stuck in a heavy Wi-Fi zone.
2. Himalayan Pink Salt
Himalayan pink salt can help normalize the ion balance in your body, not only by eating it, but also just by physical contact. A salt soak is very beneficial, even if you only soak your feet. Pink salt slabs are sold to rest your feet on, so you can reap the benefits of salt without soaking—try one under your desk at work. Himalayan salt lamps help balance the ionic levels in your home continuously.
No, you don’t need to send your children to their rooms. Grounding is a method of returning your EMF frequency to the frequency of the natural environment by standing barefoot on the good, clean earth for as little as 20 minutes per day.
4. Moving Water
Bathing in moving water can also encourage your EMF to return to normal, and it does not require a swim. Spending time walking or resting near a natural body of water (i.e. not a dam or swimming pool) with natural movement (rivers, creeks, ocean rather than a pond) has an effect similar to grounding.
Mineral-rich or salt-water not only shows promising medical results for many difficult ailments, but it can also combine the benefits of natural salt therapy with those of moving water. What a great reason to visit your local natural hot springs and reset your electromagnetic field!
6. Unplug Your Home and Mind
It seems obvious but is often overlooked. Dedicating a week or more to occasionally escape all electronic devices is very good medicine, especially if you choose an escape like camping where you may find: opportunities to get away from most high-level EMFs, plenty of time to go barefoot, and even a creek nearby. This includes simply unplugging your Wi-Fi router overnight while you’re asleep to prevent passive exposure during the nighttime hours.
7. Wear a Harmoni Pendant
The Harmoni Pendant works through the science of bioenergetics. Bioenergetics is a study of vibrational frequency and explains that everything has its own vibration. Every organ in your body, your cell phone, WiFi, electricity — everything in your world vibrates at its own frequency. It has been clinical proven to reduce EMF-causing stress at the cellular level. To learn more about the Harmoni Pendant, check out our product review.
What Will You Do About EMFs?
Learning about EMFs is not enough if it only causes worry or anxiety. Now is the time to formulate a plan to limit or avoid the EMFs in your environment and to heal the overload.
Some strategies can be applied right away—today:
- Salt soak – Try adding these detox essential oils to your bath for added benefits.
- Keeping devices off laps and on tables.
- Wear a Harmoni Pendant.
Some take planning, but are achievable this week:
- Buy wired headphones.
- Introduce new time limits for children’s electronics if needed.
- Switch to microwave-free cooking strategies.
- Consider adding a pink salt lamp or slab to your home.
It may take more advanced planning and a month or two to implement some changes:
- Plan some unplugged time in nature into your next vacation.
- Research your local natural hot springs.
- Develop a habit of spending time near natural bodies of water.
- Limit your own electronics time as much as possible.
Long term goals take time, but are worth the effort:
- Learn where high-EMF towers are (or are planned when considering a home purchase.)
- Be proactive about EMF safety at your child’s school and in your work environment.
- Establish regular habits to heal the EMF damage and prevent new exposure.
EMF radiation caused by microwaves, Wi-Fi signals, and other devices in your home can impact your health. But a few simple changes can help make your home healthier. Where will you start in detoxing your home today? If you need more ideas, let us help with our Toxic-Free Healthy Home Makeover tour.
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